Box Chocolate Review

Kestener

Info Details
Country France   (Paris 5ème)
Style Classic      
lo
med
hi
CQ
Sweetness
Intensity
Complexity
Impact
Alain Robert, the French spider man, climbs skyscrapers & other towering structures with his barehands / barefeet, often without ropes, anchors, or other safety gear. His wall crawls usually take about an hour.

Along the way he has suffered his share of bumps, bruises, falls, bone-shattering breaks, wounds, cuts, dislocations, etc.

Several assaults end in arrest with police citing Robert for wasting their time. (The solution of course is that the police should stick to crime.)

Kestener too can scale some heights, & takes some plunges.
Presentation   4 / 5
pop medley of pieces within a magnetic-enclosure box
a bit imprecise -- some bare-bottoms missed in the enrobing / overhanging feet, etc.


Aromas   4.3 / 5
nut dominant
floral perfume top note
Textures/Melt   7.1 / 10
Shells: minor resistance
Centers: medium gauge
Flavor   40.6 / 50
pretty evident
chocolate mainly just a fruit 'n nut magnet
texbook, to be sure, by-the-numbers... & therein lies a problem -- recipes, formulas, & construction tweeted in from Contrôle Centrale, some of them passionless... as a morgue attendent on the nightshift
Quality   22.8 / 30
Competent work-study product; serviceable & unremarkable. The kind of material that keeps France's rep intact, impresses foreigners, & pick-ups a few ribbons at dessert club awards.
Selections
Couverture: ??
Quintessence -- supposedly of praline; fried doughnut note + a bit stuck in, seemingly, glucose

Ecorce de Tendresse -- the very name advertises cinnamon bark (ecorce) but the FX approximates lavender; either way, the spice just a pinpoint amidst a Milk Choc ganache of some bodacious, almost mealy, texture

Éclats -- no shock / no shatter, just a smooth sweet gianduia; fat, oil-rich

MIstral -- named after the cold, dry wind from the north common in the south of France & Kestener blows poetic on it (Under a blanket of milk couverture, this Madagascar chocolate ganache reveals delicately fine thyme notes. In addition the warmer tones of yellow lemon zest. An explosion of flavor recalling Provence.); evokes in reality a collision of the Goths, crude & haphazard, the citrus & the herb clash & never really resolve themselves as they ultimately descend into a smoked pit roast; given Madagascan cacáo's inherent acidity, why bother adding zest?; misguided

Tornade -- a misnomer... promoted as a tornado of flavor when in fact this "pistach-i-pan" (for pistachio marzipan) acts quietly, in reverential tones, on the tongue, whispering sweet nutmeats between French tarragon & star anise; innovative evil genius & incredibly buxom-bodied too

Corolle Lait -- a Milk Choc Hazelnut Praline in a heavy, thick, rich cream ganache yet hyper-sweet; a potentate with melt-away texture; excellence

Emeraude -- half-dome piped with creepy green cream fondant thanks to mint / lime / milk; disjointed & ambivalent & oddly satisfying

Pulpeuse -- raspberry just jams in from front lip to final lick (including a little sorbitol cough-syrup) whereas the Grands Cru blend (from Trinidad, Ecuador, Madagascar & Ivory Coast) kick-back in a subservient though nicely supportive role; a vainglory in maybe the perfect imbalance

P'tit Gibus Orange -- citrus in a gummy sugar bomb disguised as almond pâte

Reviewed July 10, 2013
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